Here at Gathered we love a yarn bowl, but if you’ve never heard of them before and are wondering what is a yarn bowl… well, it’s as it sounds, a bowl for your yarn! But what’s the point of them, and how do they differ from a regular bowl?
What is a yarn bowl?
Yarn bowls (which may also be called a knitting bowl or wool bowl) are a fantastic product for knitters and crocheters, and they come in a huge range of sizes, styles and materials. The main purpose of a yarn bowl is that it keeps your ball of yarn in place. When you’re busy knitting or crocheting, as you pull on your yarn it’s easy for your balls to roll off or get tangled, gathering dust on the floor, finding it’s way under the sofa, somehow wrapping itself around table legs… or worse – becoming a play toy for your cats!
How does a yarn bowl work?
Yarn bowls normally have a curved cut into them which makes them different to regular bowls, and this is where your yarn is threaded through. As you pull on the yarn as you work, the yarn will come through this cut but the ball will stay neatly in the yarn bowl (often spinning around inside the bowl). Some bowls also come with handy holes for your needles or hooks too.
Why should I use a yarn bowl?
As well as keeping your yarn in one place, another advantage of using a yarn bowl is when you are using two yarns together, as these can easily become entangled with each other – but storing one (or both) in a yarn bowl means you’ll cut down on those nasty tangles!
They make fantastic gifts for the crocheter or knitter in your life, or just as a well-deserved treat for yourself. One of the main things we love about yarn bowls is that there are a huge range of independent makers that produce them, from ceramicists to woodturners, so buying a yarn bowl is a great way of supporting small artisan makers. We’ve tried to include a range of bowls at different prices in this list, but remember that a lot of these products are handmade unique items created by skilled crafts people, so it’s worth the investment for something so special.
How big is a yarn bowl?
It’s important to look closely at the dimensions when buying a yarn bowl as they come in all sorts of different sizes. As a general rule your average yarn bowl will measure around 5 – 7 inches in diameter, which is normally big enough for most knitter and crocheters (as an example, it should fit an average sized yarn cake, a couple of 50g balls of cotton yarn, or a skein wound into a ball). If you’re fan of using particularly big balls of yarn (for example, a 100g ball of dk yarn or bigger) or multiple balls at the same time, then you may want to look into getting a larger bowl as they may not fit in smaller bowls.
If you’re looking for more help with your knitting and crochet accesory purchases, we’ve got loads of handy articles to help you make the best decision. Find out which are the best crochet hooks or best knitting needles to buy, or take a look at our gifts for knitters and gifts for crocheters articles. You can also find our list of the best stitch markers for knitting and crochet, or check out some of the best yarn packs and yarn bundles!
21 of the Best Yarn Bowls
We love these sweet yarn bowls by Barruntundo ceramics, which come in a range of cute creature characters, including sheep, rams, foxes, giraffes and more. Handmade in Spain by a collective of female designers, prices for these yarn bowls start from £45.
While we do love ceramic yarn bowls, they can be quite fragile – which is a concern for us clumsy folks. But you can always go for a natural wooden yarn bowl if you’re after a bowl that’s a bit sturdier. These hand-turned Cherry wood bowls by Turned Studios show off the grain of the wood beautifully, plus the wood is sustainably sourced and traceable too! Priced at £59.99
We’ve got a bit of a soft spot for two-toned yarn bowls, and these stunning ones by AnnieCeramic are so nice we’d be happy just to use them as display pieces! Prices start from £48
If you’re after a wooden yarn bowl that is full of character, then you’ve got to check our NormsWoodCraft’s bowls. These big and chunky bowls are hand carved and are tall and sturdy enough that you can use them as floor-standing bowls. You can also order custom-spec hand-carved yarn bowls, and each bowl also comes with the added option to add a charming wooden mouse! Prices start from £59
When it comes to buying presents for knitter and crocheters, it can sometimes be tricky… but trust us, buy them one of these personalised ceramic yarn bowls and they’ll treasure it forever! You can customise your message, colours and even sponge choices on your order, making it a really unique and personal gift. Prices from £26
How cute are these bunny yarn bowls by LittleWrenCeramics?! Available in a range of different colours and glazes, these hand-thrown bowls are made by Victoria in North Yorkshire, and there’s a few other options available including adding a customised message to you yarn bowl. Prices start from £28.
If you’re looking for a really special yarn bowl, then these ones by Trescone Wood Turning are some of the most unique one’s we’ve ever seen. The bowls are made by Michael in Indiana who salvages, mills and drys the wood himself from trees that have been damaged by storms or other natural causes. As well as the intricate yarn holes/cuts, we love how his dye effects add a pop of colour while still showing off the beautiful grain of the wood. Prices start from £68
Maybe you want a super-sleek yarn bowl to match your stylish home – then this beautiful yarn bowl might just be perfect for you! Made in Ukraine by Kolo Navkolokola, these yarn bowls are made on a potters wheel and have a glossy finish that really adds to the minimalist style!
These hand-painted yarn bowls by V’s Craft Room are so pretty, we think they’d make the perfect gift for a loved one. Available in a range of beautiful designs, these gorgeous bowls are made to order, and can be personalised too. Prices start from £30
Here’s another yarn bowl producer who really shows off the natural qualities of wood! These beautiful hand-turned bowls are all made from locally sourced wood by Ken of WoodBeach in his workshop in Wales. Prices start from £45
Another beautiful ceramic yarn bowl that features stunning glaze colours for you here! These yarn bowls by Sarah Gamble Pottery in Branson, Missouri are all made by hand, one piece at a time, and are microwave, dishwasher, and oven safe with glazes that are food safe and lead free – so good to know you can even eat out of it when you’re not using it for yarn! Prices start from £39
This wooden yarn bowl from knitting and crochet accessory specialists KnitPro has a unique and interesting method for keeping your yarn in place. Rather than having a curved slit in the bowl, this one features a smaller cut section and a peg that goes into the notch to make sure your yarn stays in place (the peg is also attached to the bowl with a cord – a clever touch to stop you from losing it). Priced £20
Doms Pottery have a wonderful range of different yarn bowls available, all hand made and made to order. From beautiful colourful glazes, fun and funky cut-out shape details and even some jumbo yarn bowls, whatever style you’re looking for you’re sure to find the perfect yarn bowl for you! Prices start from £37
Everyone will know exactly what that fancy bowl on your table is for, thanks to it’s gorgeous knitting stitch effect decoration! These clever yarn bowls by Charan Sachar feature the classic slit for your yarn plus some cute decorative buttons, but are also built in an oval shape with a flat base to help make them super-stable! Prices start from £68.
We love the earthy tones and nature-inspired decoration on these fabulous ceramic yarn bowls by FoxRosalita. Handmade and hand-painted in Riga, Latvia, they’d make a fabulous gift for the knitter or crocheter in your life.
If you’re loving all of these beautiful yarn bowl, but think they’re a bit out of your price range, then this bargain yarn bowl might be perfect for you. Made from Steam Beach Wood, this simple yarn bowl is an affordable option for those who are watching the pennies! Priced at £17
Want to keep it affordable but not a fan of the wooden bowl above? Then how about this adorable stoneware swan yarn bowl. With the cut-out hole for the yarn to go through being cleverly incorporated into the swans neck, plus those pretty gold details, it’s a lovely bowl that would look great even if you don’t have yarn in it! Priced at £10
This wooden yarn bowl is not only made from gorgeous Indian Rosewood, but also features an amazing effect that is achieved by fractal burning! – a process using electricity to create fabulous burned cracks which are then filled with colourful resin. These bowls and hand-made in India using ethically sourced wood, and as well as this beautiful bowl they also have some other plain wood bowls too. Prices start from £31 with free international shipping.
If you want to treat yourself to a true work of art (that also conveniently doubles up as a yarn bowl), then you’ve got to check out the amazing ceramic creations by Orna Shoham Avrutzky. Her amazing hand painted sculptures all feature animals and come in a wide range of styles – we were particularly blown away by her mother whale yarn bowl – where the baby whale lifts off to reveal a compartment for your yarn!
We’ve focussed on mostly ceramic or wooden yarn bowls so far, but there is another opition – a 3D printed yarn bowl! These bowls are made from a high quality plastic by DansCraftShop, who also makes sure the bowls are polished perfectly to ensure your yarn doesn’t snag on any edges. As well as a couple of designs in the more traditional yarn bowl style, we particularly like this one with multiple holes as it could be used for a whole range of other purposes when you’re not using it for yarn! Priced at £28
For our final yarn bowl, we wanted to show you something very special indeed (although you’re going to need some pretty deep pockets for this high end design!). This incredible yarn bowl is made by Martinus, Anne and Adrian of AdrianMartinus – the Grand Prize winner of the 2020 Etsy Design Awards! Made from repurposed skateboard noses that are laminated together and then turned on a lathe – we think these bowls are incredible! We’ll let you check out the price yourself with this one!
We hope you’ve enjoyed our pick of the best yarn bowls, don’t forget if you need any help with your crochet stitches you can always check out our crochet for beginners guide. And if you’re looking to treat yourself, check out our list of the best crochet hooks and the best crochet kits for beginners.